The Register-Herald reports:
Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin was “pleasantly surprised” by the receptive attitude of new administrator Gina McCarthy but emphasized Thursday he is ready to haul the Environmental Protection Agency back into federal court over coal regulations.
Tomblin headed up a West Virginia delegation that visited the EPA in Washington last week, hoping to convince McCarthy to relax some regulations coal operators say are hampering production and prompting layoffs in the coalfields.
Just before he chaired a meeting of the West Virginia Parkways Authority, the governor dispatched a letter to McCarthy, expressing gratitude for allowing him and others an audience.
“There will be follow-ups,” the governor said after the parkways meeting.
“That’s a big turnaround from where we were with the last administrator (Lisa Jackson) with whom we could not really even get a response back when we’d write a letter. I feel encouraged by it. We’ll just have to wait and see how it plays out from here.”
Tomblin, who gained some victories in federal court when he sued the EPA over some of its regulations, said he “absolutely” will pursue the same course if McCarthy refuses to bend.